Thursday, May 17, 2012

Mushroom Salisbury Steaks

Just because a dish has become a TV dinner classic, doesn’t mean it can’t be tuned up for a family meal that qualifies for greatness with pure and fresh ingredients.  Mushroom Salisbury Steaks are a little more than hamburgers and a little faster than meatloaf but satisfy like both.  This is also a meal stretcher.  The bread crumbs in the patties not only extend the portions, they keep the patties light and moist.  The ‘steaks’ are browned in a skillet then finished in a hearty mushroom gravy in the same pan. 

Mushroom Salisbury Steaks
Serves 4

Steak patties
2 lb lean ground beef (90% lean)
1 cup fresh bread crumbs
1/2 teaspoon each dried basil and thyme
1 egg
1t Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoon oil (for browning)

Mushroom Gravy
1/2 lb sliced mushrooms
1 T butter
1 T flour
1 14-oz can beef broth
2T ketchup
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 T molasses
1 14-oz can chicken broth
2t+ Worcestershire sauce
salt & black pepper
(If needed to thicken sauce further: 2 t cornstarch mixed with 1/4 cup cold water or cold broth)

  1. Mix ground beef, bread crumbs, egg and Worcestershire sauce together.  Form into 4-6 oblong-shaped patties.  Cover loosely with plastic wrap and set aside while making gravy.
  2. In a large skillet, sauté mushrooms in butter.  Add flour and brown over low heat.  Deglaze with 1 cup broth.  
  3. Finish making gravy by slowly adding remainder of broth, ketchup, mustard and molasses.  Season with Worcestershire sauce, salt and black pepper to taste.   Remove mushroom gravy from skillet and set aside.  
  4. Wipe skillet out and add 2 teaspoons oil.  Brown patties, 3 minutes each side in a bit of butter or olive oil. 
  5.  Return gravy to skillet and cook patties 10-12 minutes until cooked through.  If gravy seems a bit thin, add cornstarch in cold liquid and simmer an additional 2 minutes.  
Serve with noodles or mashed potatoes.
You probably won’t have leftovers, but if you do, this meal freezes well.  Just like a classic TV dinner should. Store Salisbury Steaks in the type of container you will reheat them in.  For a microwave safe container, reheat on medium power to 6 minutes, then on high for an additional minute.  If reheating in an oven, store in a glass or metal pan and reheat, loosely covered, in a preheated 350˚F oven 35-45 minutes.

NOTE: Dr. J.H. Salisbury, who pressed Americans to eat leaner meats during the 19th century, is credited with inventing this dish.  His was a simple lean meat patty, broiled under a moderate flame and served with condiments like Worcestershire sauce, horseradish, lemon juice or mustard.